Off to the Isles of Scilly with the family

You would not believe the state of high excitement here chez Gilbey - at some stupid o'clock tomorrow morning we are driving down to Penzance to get the early boat over to the Isles of Scilly and we can't wait. My wife has been a few times before and we took our eldest daughter over when she was tiny, so in reality this will be the first time for our two girls. Del is very kindly having us to stay, and we are even taking our puppy Storm over for her first taste of one of the most magical places on earth. How she behaves on the ferry crossing is something I guess we'll find out tomorrow - I have started taking her out fishing with me and she seems to have got it really quickly and is behaving impeccably, indeed she's turning out to be a cracker of a dog, but you just know that from to time a puppy is going to let you down !! Cue me suddenly needing to go and do something very important somewhere else on the boat as Storm squats and goes for it !! The last time my wife and I went over she was sick as you like on the boat while I enjoyed the finer side of life with a bacon sarnie and a cup of coffee. I felt a little bit bad eating it in front of the poor girl, but what can you do ?

I only found out the other day that next Monday and Tuesday are both Bank Holidays, so I actually feel pretty good about technically not really taking any time off work at all to go away with the family. Yes, of course, the wrasse fishing gear is going with me and if the weather allows then I can't wait to get my girls stuck into a few of them out on the rocks. One thing I don't ever do though is push my kids into stuff - rightly or wrongly I would far rather they find out what they enjoy for themselves and I can but give them a go at fishing and see how they do. They have been a few times before and loved it, but that could have also been because there was a mighty fine barbecue just at the right time, kindly produced by Nick Hart on the wonderful Exe Valley fishery. I seem to remember Nick and I also needing to "check the fishing gear was working properly by having to nail a few trout on lures and floatfished bread". The things parents have to do eh ?

And talking of wrasse fishing and the Isles of Scilly, check out the new issue of Sea Angler magazine with part 3 of my mini-wrassing on plastics series - have a look right at the back on pages 130, 131, 132 and 133. No, it's nowhere near as "big" as bass fishing, but it's a bit of fun and I am hearing about more and more anglers having a go at it and loving it. Above is the front cover of last month's issue with Nick Hart and a bass he caught on a weightless soft plastic last year over in southern Ireland, and then look below for the current cover of Fly Fishing and Fly Tying magazine with Nick on the cover doing his more usual fly fishing thing. I can't think of a better example of how important it is to be open-minded as an angler (and indeed a human being) - Nick is one hell of a fly fisherman, but he can also very easily turn to lure fishing when he needs to, and he is pretty handy at that as well, in fact I got a call off him this morning as he was on his way to a lure fishing session up on the North Devon coast. Why would anybody ever want to close themselves off to new stuff and new experiences ? I hope you all have a good few days off and I will try to keep the blog going while I am away. Love or loathe the Monarchy, you've got to hand it to the Queen. She's some lady to have been on the throne for that long, and long may she continue if you ask me............